A RENEWABLE energy project at land adjacent to Backwater Reservoir, six miles north west of Kirriemuir, could generate up to a third of Scottish Water’s annual energy requirement should plans for a wind farm on the Scottish Water owned site be approved.
Details of the project were announced on Wednesday by Eneco UK Ltd – a company chosen to partner with Scottish Water following a decision by the utility to investigate and develop all appropriate opportunities on its land and assets to build a wide range of renewable energy projects.
To be known as Macritch Hill, the proposed 18-turbine wind farm has the capacity to generate 142GWh per annum – almost a third of Scottish Water’s 445GWh annual energy requirement.
Following the announcement, Eneco will begin a period of public and stakeholder engagement as well as Environmental Impact Assessments and technical surveys to determine the final number, size, location and design of the turbines.
The first phase of the consultation process will be a series of public exhibitions designed to introduce the proposed wind farm and gain initial feedback.
These are due to take place next February and will be followed by regular updates and further exhibitions to feedback on progress.
In addition, Eneco will set up a community liaison group which will play an important role in capturing local opinion on how the community benefits fund, which would be set up if the proposal was to be approved, could best be allocated.
Following this consultation period, expected to last at least 12 months, Eneco will submit a planning application to the Scottish Government.
Daniel Badcock, development manager at Eneco Wind UK, said: “The planning and consultation process is all about conversation and relationships. It’s an important way for members of the public, stakeholder groups and organisations to ask questions, share their views and help shape the design of the project. Details of these events will be announced in January.”
Chris Banks, commercial director at Scottish Water, added: “It is absolutely essential that extensive community and stakeholder engagement takes place before any plans are submitted for consideration. Eneco is planning a series of events in the Angus area to keep the community informed and listen to views, and we would encourage everyone with an interest to take part.”
More details about the information days can be found on the Macritch Hill Wind Farm website: www.macritchhillwindfarm.co.uk
Eneco Wind UK Ltd., is a subsidiary of the business unit, Eneco Wind which is part of the Dutch Utility. Based in Warwick, the company’s portfolio includes onshore projects at Tullo, near Laurencekirk and the current development of a 51MW wind farm on the Lochluichart Estate. Eneco is also a 50-50 partner in the proposed Navitus Bay wind project of up to 1200MW located to the west of the Isle of Wight.